#23 -The Best-Selling Author

William Green is the author of Richer Wiser Happier, an outlier in investing books as a best-seller. He is a craftsman and a perfectionist and having interviewed 40 of the world’s top investors for the book, has some fascinating perspectives on investing and on life.


William Green spent five years painstakingly crafting Richer Wiser Happier and distilling his learnings from interviewing 40 of the world’s top investors. This was a labour of love for him – he didn’t take a vacation in that time – and he went to extraordinary lengths, for example one chapter contains 11,111 words, because he liked the number. The love and careful craftmanship shines through and is what made the book a best-seller.


Green always wanted to be a writer and studied English Literature at Oxford. He fell in love with markets, partly as he saw it as “a smart alec short cut way of making a living without doing too much work”. He had his first article published almost by accident and ended up as a journalist. Interviews with great investors followed. He persuaded John Templeton to see him for a Forbes article with an element of cunning and guile. As he interviewed more successful investors, he became more interested in the personality types, and it became a moral and intellectual pursuit – how do you build a sustainable and successful life? “The great investors are playing this game they can’t get enough of” – very true of Mario Gabelli, for example, our last guest. The money is a good scorecard but the game itself is intoxicating. And Green suggests we ask ourselves “am I playing some game that I am really suited to play?” and “am I really passionate about it?”


Green spent five years writing the book, which unusually for an investing book, has become a best seller. It was an all consuming passion, he didn’t take a vacation in that period. He says he wanted to create something “true, beautiful and good”. He interviewed 40 investors for the book, and the people he went big on were the good thinkers, people to learn from, people he admired.

Green mirrors some of the qualities of some of these great investors – the obsessiveness, committing to quality in an uncompromising way in the same way some of the investors seek out quality investments.

Some of the most popular highlights of the book include:

Sixth, said Templeton, “One of the most important things as an investor is not to chase fads.”

“There are four things that we know improve brain health and brain function,” says Shubin Stein. “Meditation, exercise, sleep, and nutrition.”

“All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”

Source: Amazon



William Green is the author of RICHER, WISER, HAPPIER: How the World’s Greatest Investors Win in Markets and Life.
Green has interviewed the world’s most successful investors, exploring in depth how they have achieved such success in a highly competitive field. And how we can benefit by copying their winning strategies.
Green has written for The New Yorker, Time, Fortune, Forbes, Barron’s, Fast Company, Bloomberg Markets, and The Economist. He has collaborated on several books and worked closely with renowned his friend Guy Spier on his book, The Education of a Value Investor. Green also wrote and edited The Great Minds of Investing, which briefly profiles 33 renowned investors.
Green was born in London, went to school at Eton (our 3rd Old Etonian on the podcast), studied English literature at Oxford University, and received a Master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. He lives in New York with his wife and family.

william green



Green recommended two books:





Why We Meditate: 7 Simple Practices for a Calmer Mind by Daniel Goleman and Tsoknyi Rinpoche. A new book which teaches you how to overcome negative thoughts

Letting Go by David Hawkins. This book describes a method of using an inner mechanism of surrender – this is a practical way of releasing inner blockages to happiness.


William didnt suggest his own book, but I shall. It’s a book which will indeed make you wiser and happier. It may not make you financially richer but you will be richer as a person.


Richer WIser Happier


Steve asked William if he would come on the podcast and he kindly said yes. THey almost met up in Omaha, maybe next yearh


This is an AI generated transcript – let us know if it’s good enough and useful.